Salt Lake City Pioneer Day Events 2018

Parades, fireworks, and music honor the arrival of Utah's early settlers

Monument marking place where Mormon pioneers first entered Salt Lake Valley, This Is The Place Heritage Park.
••• Stephen Saks/Getty Images

Pioneer Day, also known as Days of '47 or simply the 24th of July, marks the day in 1847 when Brigham Young and the first group of Mormon pioneers entered the Salt Lake Valley. It's an extra summer holiday for most Utahns that is celebrated in much the same way as the Fourth of July with picnics, parades, rodeos, concerts, and fireworks. Days of '47 events are held throughout the spring, but most occur in the week or so before July 24.

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    Midsection Of Man Playing Violin
    ••• Heidi Harting / EyeEm / Getty Images

    The Days of '47 Pops Concert features Choral Arts Society of Utah, West Valley Symphony of Utah, and Joshua Creek performing patriotic and Broadway favorites. The concert is free, but tickets are required.

    When: Friday and Saturday, July 13 and 14, 7:30 p.m

    Where: Abravanel Hall

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    Days of '47 floats

    Meet the people who create the Days of ’47 parade floats and see what it takes for the production to come together. Vote for your favorite float, and on parade day on July 24, watch to see if your picks won the People’s Choice or the Children’s Choice awards.

    When: Monday and Tuesday, July 16 and 17, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

    Where: Mountain America Expo Center (formerly known as South Towne Expo Center)

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    The Days of '47 Rodeo is traditionally Utah’s largest rodeo, drawing world-champion cowboys, cowgirls, and rough stock. The park opens at 4 p.m. for activities including mechanical bull rides, petting zoo, carnival, pony rides, live music, and cultural exhibits.

    When: July 19–21, 23, and 24, 8 p.m.

    Where: Utah State Fair Park

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    The concert continues an annual tradition of commemorating the arrival of the first Mormon pioneers in the Salt Lake Valley on July 24, 1847. Tickets are free and required. Standby seating is available on a first-come, first-served basis. The standby line forms at the north gate of Temple Square at 6:30 p.m.

    When: Friday and Saturday, July 20 and 21, 8 p.m.

    Where: LDS Conference Center

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    At this family-oriented event, walk in the footsteps of the pioneers of 1847 in this commemorative hike that follows Emigration Creek through the neighborhoods of Salt Lake City to the area's first pioneer campsite. The 5-mile hike is free, but advance registration is suggested. An authentic pioneer breakfast will be served at First Encampment Park after the hike.

    When: Saturday, July 21, 7 a.m.

    Where: Donner Park

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    This all-kids parade is a fun warm-up for the "big show" on July 24. The parade is followed by a free family festival at Washington Square until 2 p.m. Please bring one or more canned food items for the Utah Food Bank.

    When: Saturday, July 21, 10 a.m.

    Where: Downtown Salt Lake City at 600 East and 500 South

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    Real Salt Lake will battle the Colorado Rapids in a professional soccer game with fireworks in honor of Pioneer Day to follow. Tickets are available online.

    When: Saturday, July 21, 8 p.m.

    Where: Rio Tinto Stadium

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    The Deseret News Marathon is USATF sanctioned and a Boston Marathon qualifier. It's a great downhill run that follows the path the pioneers took in 1847. The run's total elevation drop is 3,200 feet and it ends in downtown Salt Lake City along the Days of '47 parade route. There's also a half marathon, 10K, and 5K. 

    When: Tuesday, July 2, 5:30 a.m.

    Where: Big Mountain above Emigration Canyon

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    The Sunrise Service features a combined choir from throughout the valley and an inspirational talk. All denominations are welcome. Admission is free and tickets are not required.

    When: Tuesday, July 24, 7 a.m.

    Where: The Assembly Hall on Temple Square

     

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    The Days of '47 parade is Utah's biggest parade and one of the oldest in the country. Many people camp out on the streets the night before to get a great viewing spot along the route. The parade is televised on KSL 5. 

    When: Tuesday, July 24, 9 a.m.

    Where: South Temple and State Street

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    Pioneer Days at This Is the Place Heritage Park begins with a flag raising ceremony and ends with the bang of a candy cannon. Enjoy some of the same activities that brought joy to the weary pioneers following their long journey: candy cannon, panning for gold, pony and train rides, music, crafts, and more. There will also be Native American dancing, a bird show, and games. Admission is $12.95 for adults, $10.95 for seniors, $8.95 for children ages 3 to 11, and free for children 2 and younger.

    When: Tuesday, July 24, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

    Where: This Is the Place Heritage Park

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    One of Salt Lake City's biggest Native American celebrations includes an intertribal powwow, music, dancing, crafts, food, and celebrity appearances. A fireworks display begins at 10 p.m. Admission is $5.

    When: Tuesday, July 24, noon

    Where: Liberty Park

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    Merrill Osmond presents the Youth Pioneer Production & Firework Celebration entitled "The Pioneer Legacy" in St. George. More than 100 youth will depict Utah's pioneer and Native American journeys through music, dance, and theater. The event is free but donations for the Olive Osmond Hearing Fund are welcome.

    The production begins at 9:20 p.m. with fireworks at 10:15 p.m. Bring blankets and water (chairs, coolers, and outside food not allowed).

    When: Tuesday, July 24; gates open at 6:30 p.m.

    Where: Dixie State University Trailblazer Stadium

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    The Bees take on the Memphis Redbirds in a minor league baseball game on Pioneer Day. Tickets range from $12 to $20.

    When: Tuesday, July 24, 6:35 p.m.

    Where: Smith's Ballpark